20 things you didn't know about the man who makes your iPhone: Foxconn CEO Terry Gou
Foxconn is one of the world’s most notable manufacturing firms. Known for manufacturing components for the likes of Apple, Dell, Sony, IBM and Nokia, Foxconn has built a reputation in the industry for being an affordable, efficient and reliable supplier. In the past Foxconn’s reputation has been marred by employment concerns, namely suicides at its factory in China and its CEO Terry Gou has been criticized for his bullish approach to business, however there must be more to the man who has built a global empire from nothing.
Manufacturing Global takes a closer look at the ‘man who makes your iPhone’.
- Gou started the business with a $7,500 loan from his mother.
- His father was a mid-ranking police officer.
- Before starting Foxconn, Gou had three years of vocational training under his belt and had served in the military. He had also worked for two years as a shipping clerk, where he got first hand view of Taiwan’s booming export market.
- He opened his first global headquarters in 1974.
- The first product developed by Foxconn was a channel-changing knob for black-and-white televisions.
- Envisioning his future success, Gou spent many hours learning to write his name perfectly in English.
- Today, Terry Gou employs more than 920,000 employees across 20 plus factories.
- He once famously said that Warren Buffet was ‘too old’ to be doing business.
- Gou believes that business degrees are pointless. “You can’t read a book to learn to swim,” he said.
- Speaking about Apple founder Steve Jobs, Gou revealed he had to force him to hand over a business card.
- Foxconn is now the largest exporter out of China.
- Terry Gou is worth an estimated $5.9 billion and is the richest man in Taiwan.
- Gou built whole cities for his employees to work in. He even has chicken farms on site to lay eggs for the canteen.
- Terry Gou has his own charity called, YongLin Foundation.
- Gou is married to a dancer, 24 years his junior. At the wedding, Gou shed his tuxedo jacket and did 30 pushups to prove his virility.
- Gou takes a salary of just one Taiwanese dollar out of the business each year.
- He pays his executives bonuses out of his own pocket using dividends from the company.
- Gou does however expect his executives to meet 30 percent year-on-year increases and has a very forceful management style.
- Dell’s head of procurement in Asia once said of Gou, “He really is one of the top sales guys in the world.”
- Tim Cook, Apple CEO summed him up by saying, “He is a strong leader with a passion for excellence.”
Ultium Cells LLC/Li-Cycle: Sustainable Battery Manufacturing
Ultium Cells LLC - a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solutions - has announced its latest collaboration with Li-Cycle. Joining forces the two have set ambitions to expand recycling in North America, recycling up to 100% of the scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing
What is Ultium Cells LLC?
Announcing their partnership in December 2019, General Motors (GM) and LG Energy Solutions established Ultium Cells LLC with a mission to “ensure excellence of Battery Cell Manufacturing through implementation of best practices from each company to contribute [to the] expansion of a Zero Emission propulsion on a global scale.”
Who is Li-Cycle?
Founded in 2016, Li-Cycle leverages innovative solutions to address emerging and urgent challenges around the world.
As the use of Lithium-ion rechargeable batteries in automotive, industrial energy storage, and consumer electronic applications rises, Li-Cycle believes that “the world needs improved technology and supply chain innovations to better recycle these batteries, while also meeting the rapidly growing demand for critical and scarce battery-grade materials.”
Why are Ultium Cells LLC and Li-Cycle join forces?
By joining forces to expand the recycling of scrap materials in battery cell manufacturing in North America, the new recycling process will allow Ultium Cells LLC to recycle cobalt, nickel, lithium, graphite, copper, manganese and aluminum.
“95% of these materials can be used in the production of new batteries or for adjacent industries,” says GM, who explains that the new hydrometallurgical process emits 30% less greenhouse gases (GHGs) than traditional processes, minimising the environmental impact. Use of this process will begin later in the year (2021).
"Our combined efforts with Ultium Cells will be instrumental in redirecting battery manufacturing scrap from landfills and returning a substantial amount of valuable battery-grade materials back into the battery supply chain. This partnership is a critical step forward in advancing our proven lithium-ion resource recovery technology as a more sustainable alternative to mining, " said Ajay Kochhar, President, CEO and co-founder of Li-Cycle.
"GM's zero-waste initiative aims to divert more than 90% of its manufacturing waste from landfills and incineration globally by 2025. Now, we're going to work closely with Ultium Cells and Li-Cycle to help the industry get even better use out of the materials,” added Ken Morris, Vice President of Electric and Autonomous Vehicles, GM.
Since 2013, GM has recycled or reused 100% of the battery packs it has received from customers, with most current GM EVs repaired with refurbished packs.
"We strive to make more with less waste and energy expended. This is a crucial step in improving the sustainability of our components and manufacturing processes,” concluded Thomas Gallagher, Chief Operating Officer, Ultium Cells LLC.